Hi, me again. Life has been crazy, my schedule has been booked, not a lot of time to really get back into this. But I am trying. ANYYYYYWHO lets continue, shall we?
I want to touch on the process of getting to the Milano Fashion Institute for those who have asked me how I actually discovered it and thought to apply. But before I continue I was to point out two things for this blog post. I am going to be very open and honest about everything. I have come to a point in my life where I have realized that shit happens (sorry for the language, mom). Most likely someone you know has gone through it too or will in their lifetime. So coming to terms with life events and what gets thrown at you, is very important. With that being said, this is a very weird post to make because a good bit of people do not know these things about me.
I also want to point out, that I have opened up the comments at the bottom of this page, so you can reply back, comment on my Facebook post, via text or however you please.
So as you probably deciphered from the last post. My introduction to adult life was less than ideal, but I kept finding ways to bulldoze through the obstacles and become “okay”.
There were many times when I questioned myself, questioned my choices, and if I should just give up and move home to Charlotte where I knew I would be comfortable. Obviously I didn’t choose that path, but I came very, very close back in April.
You may or may not know that I was the assistant store manager for a boutique called Francescas. I was finally given the opportunity to move up in my retail career and I was so excited. This came after leaving both Michael Kors and J. Crew. (Also I should note, I did write this a while ago, and since then, I have gone back to Michael Kors.) At almost a month on the dot, I received an email from HR that I was going to be terminated from my position. I was devastated. I knew why, I knew what had happened, and there was nothing I could have done to change the outcome of what got me to that point.
Lots of things ran through my head: why me? is this place just really not the place for me? should I keep pursuing this? should I move home? what if I go back to Michael Kors but in NC? will I ever make it or to my dream job if I go back? what even is my dream job?
There finally came a time where I was not panicking, I was not upset or emotional, I was just calm. Then a person suggested that I come to Italy to visit. Now I know I am young but I have been working and in school for a very long time. I have always had some kind of responsibility. I graduated college and went to work basically 3 days later. I never had that “break” in time to just pick up and do something fun and for myself. So that is exactly what I did.
I called my dad and he suggested I come to Hilton Head to hang out and I said “no I think I want to go to Italy”. His response was “GO!!”. Three days later I was landing in Milan. I was there for five days and had so much fun. I did not tell anyone, I did not even tell my mom until I was at the JFK airport about to board the flight.
When I studied abroad before, I knew how to get around on the trains and how to communicate a little bit. However, I had never been to Italy so it was a whole new world. I won’t get into the details of what I did, because honestly I did not get a lot done when I was there except walk a lot, eat pizza and had gelato for lunch and dinner one day. But it was a good break from reality and clearing my head. Spending time with myself and someone else just made a lot of things clear.
I was given the opportunity to walk around the city of Milan by myself for a couple of hours before my train back to the hotel when I stumbled upon a poster for the Milano Fashion Institute. This came after seeing the woman dressed head-to-toe in an outfit that cost more than my whole life’s savings. Carrying a $23,000 handbag that is the pinnacle of handbags. I thought to myself “wow someone really designed something so beautiful and had a team creative enough to make a brand or trend so coveted and desirable by millions if not billions of people. What a job, to know that something you came up with or strategized, is out there being bought or executed by those people. I want to do that.
Back at the hotel I looked up the school, looked at their programs, who has studied there, what are their credentials etc. Found a program I was really interested in and researched some more. Then I got more curious and looked at other international programs that did the same thing, and a few in the states. Like I said in my last post though, I wanted to avoid the GRE because it just was not going to go in my favor.
Back in the states I found myself frantically applying for jobs, and back to asking myself those questions when somehow I found myself on all the unclosed tabs of the grad schools I wanted to consider applying to. Surprise, I filled them out.
Now the process is actually a little harder than expected because you have to have a lot of documents, transcripts, and lots of proof that you are going to actually excel at this school. After your initial transcripts and documents / application is accepted, you have to turn in a “motivational letter”, go through two interviews and then wait 4-6 weeks to hear if you got in. I applied back in April and found out in July that I was accepted.
The interviews were via Skype and on Italian time so there was a time where it was 9 a.m. there and 3 a.m. here but I was in full hair and makeup ready to meet with my professor and academic board. If that does not show my dedication then I do not know what does, because everyone knows I love my sleep.
The final interview was going over my motivational letter and talking about what made me want extend my education especially in Italy. I am going to close with my letter that I wrote and leave it at that. They felt I was worthy enough to take on this next step in my life, and explore something that I did not know would turn into a reality.
From the time I was little until now, I have always been a planner. I had to always know what was going on, when it was happening and how long it was going to take so I could plan something else. My life plan was to go to college at my dream school, major in broadcasting, graduate a semester early, take a semester off to move to NYC to then attend NYU grad school. Work for a major news company and live happily ever after. As life and “the real world” got closer, I realized that was not the case or what was going to happen at all.
I was never the straight A student. I was never a great test taker. I even failed a couple of classes and made bad decisions as every adolescent tends to do as they grow up.
I did not attend my dream school, West Virginia University, and that was the first “major” curve ball thrown my way. I had to pick a school close to home which I really disliked because it did not go with my plan. I did, however, stick with broadcasting and was still on plan to graduate early. Until I didn’t get credit for a course and was set back a semester until I could finish in May 2018.
I took my internship at a news station in a small town of Mississippi, and that was when I discovered I didn’t want to pursue the degree I was getting. It did not excite me and my passion was not there. So I changed my degree to broadcast-journalism. This way when I graduated I could do more written stories and be a part of any part of a news station, paper, or magazine.
Rewinding to when I was a sophomore in college and I got hired at Michael Kors, and found out that I was good at sales. I worked for Michael Kors, for three and a half years and would still be working there if life was not carrying me a different direction. I want to explore the many avenues that the fashion world has to offer. I go to New York City often and fall in love each time with the atmosphere. The romanticism from the people walking on the streets in the new trends or setting the new trends. I love it when I am abroad and see all the fashion and marketing plans put into place that set the tone for the rest of the world to follow.
On my last trip to Milan, I was in a place where I did not know if I wanted to pursue fashion or sports. This uncertainty freaked me out. But when I got off the plane, and traveled to the city center, I was looking at the city with a set of fresh eyes. I was calm and able to look at it and appreciated the fact that I did not know what was in the cards for me and for once I was okay with that.
So here I am, taking a risk. Applying for graduate school programs to start getting real training in what I feel like I am meant to do. I want to see what I can learn from people who are the best of the best. I want to be taught how to make a career out of something I stumbled across when I was home for fall break one year in college but fell in love with.